Arkils tingstad

Arkils tingstad ("Assembly location of Arkil") is the remains of the Viking Age thing or assembly location of a hundred in Uppland, Sweden. It is situated on the outskirts of Stockholm. The remains consist of a rectangular stone formation and two runestones.

The runestones and the assembly location were created by the Skålhamra clan who also had the two Risbyle Runestones made across the lake near their estate. It consequently appears that they owned land on both sides of the lake. They also made the runestone U 100 at a path in the forest.

Scholars disagree on the function of a Viking Age assembly location. According to one view, all the people in the vicinity assembled there in order to reach agreements and to mete out justice. Another view sees the assemblies as meetings for the chieftains only who merely stated what they had decided to do and where they interrogated and punished their subordinates.

Before the Christianization of Scandinavia, the pagan blóts were performed by chieftains and magnates. When Christianity arrived, the Christian rites and especially baptism were central to the community. It is possible that the Skålhamra clan created the assembly location in order to have settlements around the lake baptized by priests from Sigtuna. The inscriptions suggest that the location had no continuity from Norse paganism.

Based on the styles of the inscriptions, the assembly location was created in the 1010s, and the runestones are some decades older than the Jarlabanke runestone U 212 which tells of the creation of another assembly location.

Runestones

Below follows a presentation of the runestones based on information collected from the Rundata project, organized according to location. The transcriptions from runic inscriptions into standardized Old Norse are in the Swedish and Danish dialect to facilitate comparison with the inscriptions, while the English translation provided by Rundata give the names in standard dialect (the Icelandic and Norwegian dialect).

U 225

This runestone was carved by a runemaster named Gunnar and is classified as being in runestone style RAK. This is the classifiecation for inscriptions with a runic text has no dragon or serpent heads and the ends of the runic bands are straight.

Latin transliteration

... uk * arkil * uk * kui * þiR * kariþu * iar * þikstaþ ... ...unu * iki mirki * maiRi * uirþa * þan * ulfs * suniR * iftiR * kir... ...iR * suinaR * at * sin * faþur

Old Norse transcription

[Ulfkell](?) ok Arnkell ok Gyi þæiR gærðu hiar þingstað ... [M]unu æigi mærki mæiRi verða, þan Ulfs syniR æftiR gær[ðu], [sniall]iR svæinaR, at sinn faður.

English translation

Ulfkell(?) and Arnkell and Gýi, they made the Assembly-place here ... No landmark will be more (great), than (the one) the sons of Ulfr made in (his) memory; able lads in memory of their father.

U 226

This runestone was also made by Gunnar and is classified as being carved in runestone style Pr1. This classification, which is also known as Ringerike style, is for those inscriptions that have runic bands that end in serpent or animal heads depicted in profile.

Latin transliteration

ristu * stina * uk * staf * uan * uk * in * mikla * at * iartiknum uk kuriþi * kas at * uiri * þu mon i krati * kiatit lata kunar ik stin

Old Norse transcription

Ræistu stæina ok staf unnu(?) ok inn mikla at iarteknum. Ok Gyriði gats at veri. Þy man i grati getit lata. Gunnarr hiogg stæin.

English translation

(They) raised stones and produced the staff(?) and the great signs (of acclaim); Gyríðr also cherished her husband: he will therefore be commemorated in weeping. Gunnarr cut the stone.
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Kristina Svensson
19 November 2012
Old Village Council Place from late Viking Age. Not of great importance.
Thomas Nilsson
25 June 2017
It is a historical place
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